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So tell me more about WhereScape's SQL Server Fast Track 3.0 Announcement....

22 February 2011
Michael Whitehead

The partners announced in the SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse 3.0 release at TDWI Las Vegas were the kings of the industry: the likes of HP, IBM, Dell, EMC and Intel.  And oh yeah, there was also one software company - WhereScape.

Right after Microsoft did their 3.0 release, we did our announcementabout WhereScape's new solution for SQL Server Fast Track.  The positive reaction started at the reception, and carried through the entire conference - customers, analysts, partners and even competitors were all over us to find out what it meant.   Just is case our explanations on the night were a little flavored by enthusiasm and alcohol, this post will cover the announcement in more detail.

Micrsoft have blogged about it here.  The actual WhereScape press release is here.  Doug Leland, General Manager of Business Platform Marketing Group in Microsoft's Server and Tools Division made the following comment in the release:

“Microsoft is committed to providing new reference architectures that complement our appliances and enable our customers to achieve superior ‘out-of-the-box’ performance at the lowest cost.   WhereScape’s product complements SQL Server and will help our customers accelerate their development cycles and get into production faster and with confidence, thanks to the use of pre-tested Reference Architectures in Fast Track Data Warehouse 3.0.”

It's great to see one of the leaders in the data space talking about getting to value quicker!

If you look at our announcement slide, you could be excused for thinking we had entered the hardware business.

Actually we were trying to show support for the Fast Track 3.0 reference architecture.  You can read about it on the Microsoft website here.

The previous version of the Fast Track reference architecture looked something like this:

 - basically a set of reference architectures and platforms that reduce risk (Microsoft and the hardware partners have done the configuration work) and dramatically decrease the time it takes to get a valid, proven, balanced system up and running.

It always seemed to us that there was a unique opportunity to take this further.

What about if you could include an integrated development environment to help build data warehouses faster? 

Microsoft and their partners have done a superb job of getting customers to "create table" quickly - what could we do to help get customers to "select from"?

That's where WhereScape RED comes in.  We have invested a bunch of time working with Microsoft to make sure that WhereScape RED supports the best practice for building data warehouses.  The defaults are what you (and Microsoft) would expect - things like set based processing in the database, using minimal logging etc etc.

Our customers have already been experiencing the time to value advantages of WhereScape RED:

What we have done now is make sure that our customers can continue to build rapidly, whilst also supporting the Fast Track 3.0 Reference Architecture.

The best news for Microsoft customers is that they still get to use the Microsoft BI stack they know and like.

WhereScape RED builds SSIS packages for loading data, generates T-SQL for transforming data within SQL Server, and builds SSAS cubes for aggregation.  All the objects such as the cubes or indexes are all native SQL Server objects and can be manipulated and extended using WhereScape RED or any other development tool of choice.  Of course we will always encourage people to use WhereScape RED so that you can take advantage of the integrated meta data for documentation on demand, automated lineage information, integrated work flow, auctomatic versioning, simplified promotion....the list goes on...

The combination of a development environment optimised for building SQL Server data warehouses fast, in conjunction with hardware and SQL Server 2008 R2 optimized for data warehousing makes Fast Track unique.  We are thrilled to be part of Microsoft's reference architecture, and anytime that we can take part in a release (and the party the next night) with the likes of HP, Dell and IBM, well, that works for us.


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